Part 2 Consents
On 1/18/2013, the FTC required bleach producer and seller Oltrin Solutions, LLC to release its competitor, JCI Jones Chemicals, Inc. from an agreement not to sell bleach in North Carolina and South Carolina. This non-compete agreement was part of a 2010 transaction between the two firms that the FTC alleges violated antitrust laws. The FTC’s settlement with Oltrin and JCI will restore competition between these two producers and sellers of bulk bleach, which is primarily used to disinfect water. According to the FTC, in March 2010, Oltrin agreed to pay JCI $5.5 million for, among other things, a list of bulk bleach customers from JCI’s Charlotte plant, along with an agreement that JCI would not sell bulk bleach in North Carolina or South Carolina for six years. The FTC contends that the deal between the two firms eliminated substantial competition between Oltrin and JCI in the relevant geographic market; substantially increased the market concentration for bulk bleach sales in the relevant geographic market; and increased Oltrin’s ability to raise bulk bleach prices. On 3/8/2013, the Commission approved the final order settling charges that a non-compete agreement between bulk bleach producers Oltrin Solutions, LLC and JCI Jones Chemicals, Inc. reduced competition in North Carolina, South Carolina, and southern Virginia.